The Woodcraft name stretches from coast to coast with locations peppered throughout the United States, ensuring that Americans are well equipped with the brand-name tools and woodworking supplies needed to pursue handyman endeavors. At Woodcraft of Birmingham, a collection of hand tools waits patiently to hammer down nails and saw brave magician assistants in half, and a variety of power tools—including drills, sanders, and grinders—adds electric oomph to construction projects. In addition to performing in-store demonstrations of new products, the shop’s wise whittlers call upon more than 80 years of collective knowledge to lead various crafts classes, in which participants learn how to carve sophisticated pens, assemble wooden step stools, and use table saws.
Sleep Outfitters' savvy sleep experts help slumber lovers find peaceful shuteye with a wide selection of name brand mattresses. Adroit sleep Sherpas lead bedtime cravers round the mountains of Sealy, Serta, Simmons, Stearns & Foster, and Tempur-Pedic mattresses, pausing to take in cushions of solid foam, bouncing innersprings, and a conspicuous lack of "Smoke On the Water" beds. Rest your noggin on a Serta Memory Foam queen-size mattress set ($597), or repose your tired torso on a Simmons Beautyrest Classic Plush queen-size mattress set ($1,199). Once somnolent souls have selected a mattress on which to paint their dreamscapes, they can opt into Sleep Outfitters' five-star delivery service, where burly mattress gods deliver and set up mattresses and remove old bedding. Indecisive catnappers enjoy the comforts of the 30-night comfort guarantee that permits two fortnights in which to decide if the right choice was made, ensuring hibernating humans won't be left with nightmares starring jilted futons and vengeful box springs.
Lexington Overstock bedecks every room of the house with an emporium of craftsman-quality furnishings. Chic padded barstools elevate four-person eating squads in an Aaron dining set ($225), and an antiqued cherry British Old World map writing desk inlaid with an old-world map ($258) insists that Columbus was right all along. Bedroom sets such as the Coventry Cannonball ($68–$998) accessorize dreams with solid wood. Living-room residents can imagine themselves on the open range thanks to the rich nail-head accents on a Ranger-Canyon recliner ($398), before bedtime beckons from an Ashley Sleep memory-foam mattress ($448+), which evokes billowy sheep bred for counting with a fluffy mix of synthetic and all-natural stuffing.
Owned and operated by horticultural experts Russell and Lyn Madison, Proper Plants' greenhouses greet visitors with more than 125 annuals ($1.10+/pack), more than 150 varieties of hanging baskets ($8+), and a plethora of other herbaceous offerings. Those who like edible beauty but dislike the time it takes to make Brad Pitt–shaped lasagna can browse the tomatoes, eggplants, and 85 varieties of vegetables, which come in small pots for short-term storage ($.95+) or nursery cans to keep them warm before the start of spring ($6.50/2.5 qt. can). Proper Plants also packs potted plants such as geraniums, verbena, and various herbs ($2.90+). The practiced staff can help DIY soil workers arrange their own hanging basket or answer any questions on crop placement or garden-gnome disciplinary techniques. Rather than use pesticides, Proper Plants uses biological controls, such as predator insects, on plants.
Casual Living refurbishes the urbanized outdoors into open-air living space with a wide variety of aluminum, steel, and wicker patio furniture. Customers can match any outdoor aesthetic without having to drag the living-room set outside by perusing Casual Living's all-weather furnishings in more than 50 different styles and myriad materials, including fabric, metal, and more. Patios pop with pizzazz or relish in relaxation with a rainbow of market-style outdoor umbrellas ($159.95) or a 13-foot Pawleys Island rope hammock ($149.95). A wood-burning fire pit equips outdoor spaces with a kitchen, heat source, and marshmallow torture device ($229.95). Casual Living occasionally ventures indoors with a collection of brass fireplace screens and sets, counter stools from Pastel (sale price $149.95), and gas-fireplace installations.
Established 32 years ago, Sandy's Sewing Center shines in its field as Lexington's only licensed dealer of Husqvarna Viking sewing machines. Those who bought their Husqvarna machines from Sandy's can sign up for machine-owner's classes free of charge, and owners of any machine can bring it in for repairs whenever necessary. Though patterns, materials, needles, and thread line the shelves in abundance, the center's greatest contributions to craft come in the form of classes and camps for students age 9 and older. Always on the leading needlepoint of embroidery, Sandy's offers accessible intros to Husqvarna's 5-D and 4-D design software, which allow stitchers to preview a design, swap colors out at will, make a pattern of their own, or convert their Home on the Range placard into a MIDI file.